public sector unions

Richard Gibson rgibson at
Tue Jul 14 11:21:04 PDT 1998

The NEA has built, from time to time and place to place, terrific relationships with parents, community groups, and other unions. However, with the rise of "new unionism" (which also seeks to mimic the corporate world in its desire for mergers) under the leadership of Bob Chase and Dennis Van Roekel, the partners NEA now seeks are with the corporate world, politicians, and the top of what poses as the labor movement.

Teachers are now centripetally positioned to fight for equality and democracy in this society. They still, in nea anyway, retain some semblances of democracy in their union. Whether or not they use that form to go out and organize in their own, and their kids, interests is an open possibility.

At 10:40 AM 7/14/98 -0400, you wrote:
>Mike Yates wrote:
>>Second, the public unions might be able to build coalitions with the
>>public more easily than private sector unions since their members often
>>provide essential public services.
>How I wish this were true, but have there been any examples of it actually
>happening? The NYC municipal unions have done nothing of the sort; they
>haven't even peeped as successive administrations have hacked at public
>services for the last 23 years. (Of course, with about half the locals in
>the main municipal union, DC 37, under grand jury investigation, they're
>hardly in a position to raise much of a stink. Not even DC 37's endorsement
>of Giuliani can stop the march of the law!) And Mark Maier, in his book
>City Unions, argues that this has been the case since NYC first recognized
>its unions 40 years ago. Any other jurisdictions have anything better to
Rich Gibson Director of International Social Studies Wayne State University College of Education Detroit MI 48202

Life travels upward in spirals.

Those who take pains to search the shadows

of the past below us, then, can better judge the

tiny arc up which they climb,

more surely guess the dim

curves of the future above them.

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